stripe stripe stripe
stripe stripe stripe
stripe stripe stripe
stripe stripe stripe
Boistfort Valley Farm: Certified Organic Produce grown locally & delivered fresh! Boistfort Valley Farm: Certified Organic Produce Grown Locally & Delivered Fresh!
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Community Supported Recipe Box

Pear Upside-Down Cake


  • 9 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, divided, plus more
  • 3/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons coarse yellow cornmeal or polenta
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup sugar, divided
  • 2 medium pears (about 1 pound)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, separated
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • Whipped cream or caramel gelato (optional)
  • Special equipment: An 8"-diameter round cake pan with 2"-high sides


printable recipe
dish: dessert
season: fall

Preheat oven to 350° F. Butter pan; line bottom with a parchment-paper round. Whisk flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl. Stir 1/4 cup sugar and 2 tablespoons water in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat to medium-high. Boil syrup without stirring, occasionally swirling pan and brushing down sides with a wet pastry brush, until sugar turns dark amber, 8-10 minutes. Remove pan from heat; add 1 tablespoon butter (caramel will bubble vigorously) and whisk until smooth. Pour caramel into prepared cake pan and swirl to coat bottom.

Peel, halve, and core the pears. Place flat on a work surface and cut lengthwise into 1/8"-thick slices. Layer slices over caramel, flat side down, overlapping as needed.

Mix remaining 3/4 cup sugar, 8 tablespoons butter, and vanilla in a large bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add yolks one at a time, beating to blend between additions and occasionally scraping bowl. Beat in flour mix in 3 additions, alternating with milk in 2 additions, beginning & ending with flour mix.

Using clean, dry beaters, beat egg whites on low speed in a medium bowl until frothy. Increase the speed to medium and continue to beat until whites form soft peaks. Fold about 1/4 of the whites into cake batter. Add in remaining whites; gently fold just to blend. Pour batter over pears in pan; smooth top.

Bake cake, rotating pan halfway through, until top is golden brown and a tester inserted into the center comes out with a few small moist crumbs attached, about 1 hour. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 30 minutes. Run a thin knife around inside of pan to release cake. Invert cake onto a plate; remove parchment paper. Serve warm or at room temperature with whipped cream or caramel gelato, if desired.

Bon Appétit, November 2011, by Karen DeMasco

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Boistfort Valley Farm, Inc.
426 Boistfort Road
Curtis, WA 98538
(360) 245-3796


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